Jellyfish-like creatures similar to venomous Portugese man o’war have been spotted washed up on south coast beaches.
The UK Coastguard has warned people to stay away from the creatures which can cause ‘painful’ stings and are ‘potentially harmful to humans and dogs alike.’
There are reports of sightings on south coast beaches including Portsmouth, Hove and Bournemouth.
It is believed the creatures could have been blown into British waters by winds caused by Hurricane Ophelia.
Aimee Rampton, duty controller for the UK Coastguard, said: ‘We are aware of these sightings after receiving multiple reports from members of the public.
‘Until an accurate identification is made, members of the public are advised to keep away from these jellyfish and report any sighting to the their local council.
‘The Coastguard has also advised the local councils of these recent sightings. Stings from Portuguese Man o’ War can be very painful and potentially harmful to humans and dogs alike.’
On Friday Shoreham Coastguard also issued a warning to keep dogs away from the creatures.
It said: ‘In some cases even though the jellyfish are out of the water the sting can be very painful and in some cases fatal.
‘Stay and keep your distance.’
Have you seen one of the jellyfish-like creatures on our local beaches? Get in touch with us by emailing firstname.lastname@example.org or calling 02392 622114.